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[fahyuh r-ahrm] /ˈfaɪərˌɑrm/
a small arms weapon, as a rifle or pistol, from which a projectile is fired by gunpowder.
Origin of firearm
First recorded in 1640-50; fire + arm2
Related forms
firearmed, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for firearm
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Instead of the report of a firearm, he heard a peal of laughter from both boys.

    The Boy Settlers

    Noah Brooks
  • Yet with a panic at his heart he knew that it was the sharp crack of a firearm.

    Riders of the Silences

    John Frederick
  • He unslung the firearm, thinking he might have occasion to use it.

  • Just then the report of a firearm was heard, and a bullet whistled by us close to our ears.

    Captain Mugford W.H.G. Kingston
  • She had not held a rifle in her hands since marrying Frank, who would not have a firearm in the house.

    Shaman Robert Shea
British Dictionary definitions for firearm


a weapon, esp a portable gun or pistol, from which a projectile can be discharged by an explosion caused by igniting gunpowder, etc
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for firearm

1640s, from fire (n.) + arm (n.2). Related: Firearms.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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